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Perkins Collection


The Perkins Collection

The Pauline Perkins Memorial Library is a gift by Dr. Richard Perkins in memory of his late wife, Pauline.  The collection initially consisted of books and other items acquired by Pauline during her lifetime. The collection continues to grow thanks to a generous endowment funded by Richard and Sondra Perkins. Dedicated on April 9th, 2001.  Dedication Service Program (PDF)

Pauline Perkins’ intention for the Library was for it to support evangelism to the Jewish community.  The donors have specified “works about Judaism, witnessing to Jews, and Messianic-Judaism” and works “appropriate to Messianic Judaism or Rabbinical Judaism.”  Based on these guidelines and the composition of the original donation subjects collected will include (but are not limited to):

Pauline A. (Wolfstone) Perkins

Born in Milwaukee to Jewish parents, her family moved to Seattle when she was six months old.  She graduated from Garfield High School in 1949, the same year she was confirmed at Temple De Hirsch Sinai.  She attended the University of Washington where she met Richard Perkins whom she married in 1953.

Pauline (Polly) met her Messiah, Jesus of Nazareth in 1971.  Believing she was a rare anomaly, she was amazed to encounter Jews for Jesus a year later.  Soon she began to lead Jews for Jesus meetings in her home, the first chapter of its kind in the US.  In 1984 she and her husband founded Jewish Christian Ministries (JCM), and served together for 13 years, speaking in churches and presenting Passover Seders.  Through Women’s Aglow she ministered to thousands of people both locally and internationally.  She felt especially at home in Israel, where she led teaching tours, one of her greatest joys.  She served God faithfully, leading Jews and Gentiles alike to her Messiah until he called her Home.

Torah Scroll

Donated by Dr. Richard Perkins and Mrs. Sondra Perkins, February 2006.  On display in the Perkins Library.


Purchased in Jerusalem in the early 1980s by Polly Perkins, this Torah scroll was used by a Messianic congregation prior to coming to Hurst Library.  Its provenance and age are unknown, but it might be as old as 200 years.

“Torah” refers to the first five books of the Old Testament or Pentateuch.  There are very specific rules for producing and using Torah scrolls.  If Ashkenazi, scrolls are written on parchment vellum made from a kosher animal.  If Sephardic, they are written on leather.  Scrolls are handwritten by specially trained scribes who must pronounce every word before writing it.  When writing “God,” the scribe must say, “My intention is now to write the holy name.”  A mistake cannot be erased; the entire sheet is set aside for “reverential interment in consecrated earth.”  A Torah scroll is not to be touched; a pointer called a “yad” is used when reading from the scroll.  Scrolls are kept covered with fabric in a cabinet, called an “ark,” in the synagogue.